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Tag Archives: Government Whistleblowers

Sessions’ Memo To DOJ Threatens Whistleblower Rights

Posted in Federal Employee Whistleblowers, Government Whistleblowers, News, Politics
Sessions' Memo To DOJ Threatens Whistleblower RightsIn a memo dated January 29, 2018, Attorney General Jeff Sessions instructed Department of Justice (DOJ) heads to not communicate with “senators, representatives, congressional committees, or congressional staff” without first consulting with the DOJ Office of Legislative Affairs (OLA). Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), a long-time advocate for whistleblower rights, has expressed his concern regarding the legality of the Attorney Sessions’… Continue Reading

Renowned Oversight Expert Criticizes Interference with Russia Investigation

Posted in Government Whistleblowers, News, Politics
Renowned Oversight Expert Criticizes Interference with Russia InvestigationIn an op-ed for The Hill, former National Whistleblower Center (NWC) executive director and widely regarded oversight expert Kris Kolesnik takes members of Congress to task for blurring the lines between campaigning and governing. Kolesnik, also a former high-level staffer for Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA), states, “people who come to Congress need to understand that, once you get here, you’re… Continue Reading

The National Whistleblower Center Supports #MeToo Legislation

Posted in Government Whistleblowers, Legislation, News, Whistleblowing Works
The National Whistleblower Center Supports #MeToo LegislationThe National Whistleblower Center, as a member of the Workplace Sexual Harassment Coalition, has signed a letter to the House of Representatives with a set of recommendations for the bipartisan bill, the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 Reform Act. In the midst of the #MeToo movement, the bill aims to improve the workplace environment for Congressional staff.… Continue Reading

Federal Whistleblowers Have Faced Government Shutdown on Justice For Over a Year

Posted in Government Whistleblowers, Legislation
Government Shutdown and the Merit Systems Protection BoardAll around the nation, hundreds of thousands of federal employees did not report to work today because of the federal government shutdown. Military families will not receive death benefits, active duty soldiers will not be paid, and the aggregate effects of a shutdown are expected to cost the American economy about $1 billion per day.… Continue Reading

Appeals Court Ruling a Setback for Veterans and Whistleblowers at the FBI

Posted in FBI Whistleblowers
Appeals Court Ruling a Setback for Veterans and Whistleblowers at the FBIDissenting judges decry “denial of due process” for FBI whistleblowers. October 26, 2017. Washington, D.C.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, sitting en banc, ruled against veterans who are employed at the Federal Bureau of Investigation and are fired for blowing the whistle. The case is known as Parkinson v. Department of Justice.  In a major setback… Continue Reading

VA Whistleblower Protections Signed into Law; Don’t Go Far Enough

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
VA WhistleblowersJune 23, 2017. Washington, D.C. Today President Trump signed the Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act into law. The law aims to protect whistleblowers from retaliation and reprisal and will require training of all VA employees about whistleblower protections. The Veterans Affairs (VA) Whistleblower Office  created by President Trump in April becomes permanent under the new law.… Continue Reading

Sen. Grassley Urges Senate to Pass IG Empowerment Act

Posted in Government Whistleblowers, Legislation
Yesterday, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) delivered a floor statement before the Senate in support of the Inspector General Empowerment Act of 2015 (S. 579). Grassley is a co-sponsor of this bi-partisan bill that aims to expand the independence of Inspector General (IG) offices and reiterates that in order to conduct oversight the IG should have access to all agency records.… Continue Reading

House Passes Bill to Expand Protections for Federal Employees Against Discrimination

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
House Passes Bill to Expand Protections for Federal Employees Against DiscriminationYesterday, the House of Representatives passed, by a vote of 403-0, a bipartisan bill introduced by Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, to strengthen equal employment protections for federal workers. Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, as well as Reps. Eleanor Holmes Norton, James F. Sensenbrenner, and Sheila Jackson Lee cosponsored the… Continue Reading

New Whistleblower Retaliation Allegations Raised Against Commerce IG

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
Whistleblower Advocacy Groups Call for Removal of Commerce IG ZinserThe Washington Post reports today that there is a new allegation of whistleblower retaliation against the Commerce  inspector general’s office. Commerce IG Todd Zinser has been under fire since the Office of Special Counsel in 2013 determined that two of Zinser’s trusted allies — his counsel Wade Green and longtime friend Rick Beitel, the principal assistant inspector general for whistleblower protection — retaliated… Continue Reading

Whistleblower Advocacy Groups Call for Removal of Commerce IG Zinser

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
Whistleblower Advocacy Groups Call for Removal of Commerce IG ZinserOn March 31, I posted a blog entitled “House Investigation Reveals Commerce IG’s Pattern of Retaliation Against Whistleblowers,” reporting the findings of a two-year investigation by the House Subcommittee on Investigations & Oversight
Committee on Science, Space & Technology. The investigation found that Department of Commerce’s Inspector General Todd Zinser and his closest staff had “over a period of many years… Continue Reading

House Investigation Reveals Commerce IG’s Pattern of Retaliation Against Whistleblowers

Posted in Government Whistleblowers, News
Representative Johnson calls for Commerce IG Todd Zinser to be removed from office The House Subcommittee on Investigations & Oversight
Committee on Science, Space & Technology opened an investigation two years ago on Commerce Inspector General Todd Zinser and his management of his office.   On March 26, Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson, Ranking Member, delivered a floor statement that laid out… Continue Reading

VA Whistleblower Protection Legislation Unnecessary Says Agency

Posted in Government Whistleblowers, Legislation
VA WhistleblowersOn March 19, the House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a legislative hearing on H.R. 571, the Veterans Affairs Retaliation Prevention Act of 2015. H.R. 571 would provide Veterans’ Affairs (VA) employees who seek to report potential government waste, criminal behavior, or compromised healthcare services within the VA a set process to fix problems at the lowest level… Continue Reading

OSC Proposed Rule For Federal Contractor Employees May Cause Confusion

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers, Government Whistleblowers, National Security
OSC Withdraws Proposed Rule That Have Harmed Federal ContractorsWashington, D.C. January 22, 2015. Today the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) proposed a rule that it claims would extend protections under the Civil Service Reform Act and the Whistleblower Protection Act to employees of Federal contractors.  However, the unintended consequences of OSC’s proposed rule may cause more harm than good for employees of federal contractors. This rule may… Continue Reading

DOJ Releases Report on FBI Whistleblower Protections

Posted in News
Yesterday, Senators Chuck Grassley and Ron Wyden expressed optimism that Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) whistleblowers may receive better protection under new guidelines outlined in a proposal to President Barack Obama.  The Department of Justice forwarded a copy of the Attorney General’s report titled “Department of Justice Report on Regulations Protecting FBI Whistleblowers.”  As I wrote in a previous post,… Continue Reading

House Panel Investigates Alleged Interference with Whistleblower’s Testimony

Posted in Government Whistleblowers, News
The Washington Examiner reports that Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., will investigate whether  a letter to the House Financial Services subcommittee constituted interference with congressional oversight or an attempt to intimidate future witnesses appearing before the panel. The letter that sparked the investigation came from John Dowd, a criminal defense lawyer representing Liza Strong, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s employment services chief and requested that a… Continue Reading

Senators Demand Answers on Surveillance of Whistleblower Communications with Congress

Posted in News
Senators Chuck Grassley and Ron Wyden issued the following press statement today in regard to the National Intelligence Agency’s plans to implement continuous monitoring of security clearance holders and it’s impact on whistleblowers who communicate with members of Congress: Grassley, Wyden Press for Answers on Continuous Monitoring of Whistleblower and Legislative Branch Communications             WASHINGTON – Senators Chuck Grassley and… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Issues Decision On Key Whistleblower Rights Case

Posted in News
Ruling Protecting Testimony Before Federal Grand Juries Will Have Widespread Impact On Fraud Investigations Washington, D.C. June 19, 2014. Today, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a landmark whistleblower decision in the case of Lane v. Franks.  The Court held that truthful testimony before a federal Grand Jury is “clearly” protected speech under the First Amendment. The Supreme Court in an unanimous… Continue Reading

Obama Administration Uses Privacy Act To Limit Congressional Oversight

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
The Washington Times reports today that  the Obama Administration is accused of using a broad interpretation of federal privacy statutes to block Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley from pursuing investigations such as “‘Fast and Furious’ gun-running scandal to the questioning of judicial nominees,” the article states. The article details how the Department of Justice invoked the Privacy Act to  bar the Senator  from… Continue Reading

Joint Senate/House Report Slams FDA Surveillance

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
Washington, D.C. February 26, 2014.  Today Representative Darrell Issa, Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and Senator Charles Grassley, Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee issued a highly important Joint Staff Report carefully analyzing the FDA’s practice of monitoring email communications sent by whistleblowers. The Joint Staff Report harshly criticized FDA’s practices and vindicated the… Continue Reading

DOJ Ignores Key Whistleblower Provision

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
According to a Senator Charles Grassley, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is potentially in violation of the anti-gag provision of the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (WPEA). Sen. Grassley brought this issue to the attention of Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz in a February 10 letter. In 2012, Sen. Grassley authored a provision of the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement… Continue Reading